Tanzania Suspends Kenya Airways Flights Over Cargo Dispute

Tanzania has announced it will suspend all passenger flights operated by Kenya Airways (KQ) between Nairobi and Dar es Salaam effective January 22, 2024, a retaliation for Kenya’s refusal to allow Tanzania’s national carrier, Air Tanzania Company Limited (ATCL), to operate cargo flights between Nairobi and other countries.

Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority (TCAA) said KQ flights suspension was based on the principle of reciprocity after Kenya violated a bilateral agreement on air services signed in 2016.

The agreement provides for reciprocal treatment of airlines from both countries.

“Kenya Airways operates 33 scheduled flights per week between Nairobi and Dar es Salaam. This decision is based on the principle of reciprocity, following the refusal by the Kenyan authorities to grant approval for ATCL’s cargo flights despite the clear provisions of the Memorandum of Understanding on Air Services, between Tanzania and Kenya signed on 24 November 2016 in Nairobi, Kenya.

Tanzania would always adhere to the principles of the Chicago Convention of 1944 and the bilateral air services agreement between the two states,” reads a statement in part from TCAA.

The suspension of KQ flights will affect travellers between the two countries, especially those in the tourism and business sectors.

KQ is the largest airline operating on the route, offering more options and competitive fares. Alternative airlines include Precision Air, Air Tanzania, and Fly540.

The dispute between Tanzania and Kenya over air travel rights has been simmering for several months.

In August 2020, Tanzania banned KQ flights for a brief period after Kenya excluded Tanzanians from a list of countries whose citizens could enter without quarantine restrictions.

The ban was later lifted, but tensions remained high.The current situation raises concerns about the future of air travel between the two countries, which are both members of the East African Community (EAC).

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Lawrence Baraza

Lawrence Baraza is a dynamic journalist currently overseeing content at Metropol TV Digital. With a keen focus on business news and analytics, Lawrence guides the platform in delivering insightful, data-driven content that empowers its audience to make informed decisions. Lawrence’s commitment to quality and his ability to anticipate market trends make him a key figure in the digital media landscape. His work continues to shape the way business news is consumed, making a significant impact in the field.

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